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[floo-vee-uh l] /ˈflu vi əl/
of or relating to a river:
a meandering fluvial contour.
produced by or found in a river:
fluvial plants.
Origin of fluvial
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin fluviālis, equivalent to fluvi(us) river (derivative of fluere to flow) + -ālis -al1
Related forms
transfluvial, adjective
unfluvial, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for fluvial
Historical Examples
  • There are two fountains upon the Place, dedicated, one to Maritime, the other to fluvial navigation.

    Paris: With Pen and Pencil David W. Bartlett
  • What, then, would be the fluvial force required to move the Welcome Nugget?

    Getting Gold J. C. F. Johnson
  • The tide runs rapidly on the Hugli, and produces a remarkable example of the fluvial phenomenon known as a “bore.”

  • It is the generosity of a fluvial Robin Hood, who steals from the wealthy to confer benefactions on the poor.

    The Spell of Switzerland Nathan Haskell Dole
  • From fluvial glades that thro my cantons run, From those rich mounds that mask the falling sun.

    The Columbiad Joel Barlow
  • These consisted of two piers forming a seaward prolongation of the fluvial channel, begun in 1858 and completed in 1861.

  • The most extensive are the fluvial deposits accumulated as valley fill throughout the entire Andean realm.

  • The fluvial wound in the side dripped thickly, inundating the thigh with blood that was like congealing mulberry juice.

    L-bas J. K. Huysmans
  • At various points tributary gorges, the graves of fluvial gods who had perished long ago, opened into the main cañon.

    Overland John William De Forest
  • The son of Helvetia discovered the precious metal in grains, and nuggets, interspersed with the drift of a fluvial deposit.

British Dictionary definitions for fluvial


of, relating to, or occurring in a river: fluvial deposits
Word Origin
C14: from Latin fluviālis, from fluvius river, from fluere to flow
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for fluvial

"pertaining to a river," late 14c., from Latin fluvialis "of a river," from fluvius "river," related to fluere "to flow" (see flow (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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fluvial in Science
  1. Relating to or inhabiting a river or stream.

  2. Produced by the action of a river or stream.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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